Remote cameras.

Woodcock.

24th January 2011: I set up a couple of remote cameras on Sunday: one taking stills, the other video.

I’m not a fan of recording or watching videos. However, video and stills remote cameras enable me to see the wildlife when it’s keeping a low profile, which is the situation at the moment. I am seeing very little wildlife on the marsh, or in Hoo Wood. I am hoping the remote cameras will enable me to get a wildlife fix.

Yesterday evening I trudged through the marsh to swap the cameras’ memory cards.

It was a very dark night. The stars appeared very bright and some of them looked particularly large. I mistook one bright object for a police helicopter hovering in the distance.

Walking along the corridor to the tenant farmer’s field, which is often as dark as a coal miner’s cellar at night-time, I heard splashing in the River Stour. Scanning towards the sound with my night scope, I saw an otter rolling about in the water. It was throwing something up in the air and diving to retrieve it. I watched it for twenty seconds or more, and then it disappeared under the water.  It’s true what they say: “You have to be there to see it.”

I swapped the memory cards in the remotes and returned home. I am always excited when slotting memory cards in my computer; you never know what images are on those cards. I put the stills card in the slot first. Three images popped onto the screen, only one showed anything worthwhile: a rather grainy black-and-white IR image of a woodcock. Well at least I have something, I thought. Next in the slot went the video card. Twelve video files appeared on the screen: eleven showing the marsh fox, with some clips in black-and-white IR and others in full daytime colour. What a result for the first night!

This entry was posted in Nature, Otter, Remote Camera, Wilden Marsh Nature Reserve, Woodcock. Bookmark the permalink.

13 Responses to Remote cameras.

  1. Pam says:

    A brilliant result Mike and a good way to see an elusive Woodcock! Nice one with the Otter too. You are braver than me, I don’t think I could wander about in the dark all alone, it is sometimes bad enough in daylight.lol!

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  2. mike585 says:

    Thanks, Pam, if I am not able to see the marsh wildlife in the daylight; one way or another, I will find a way of seeing it in the dark. It beats sitting in front of the television watching other people do things. 🙂

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  3. victoriaaphotography says:

    Yes, you are braver than me too (as Pam said).

    Many years ago, my younger brother took me fishing in the middle of the night. We were carefully waking down the shallows of a river and then walking on the riverbank, then back into the river and so on, with only a lantern between us. He told me to stand still (in the river) for a few minutes while he scouted out a water hole further down round a bend in the river. So here am I standing in pitch black in the river unable to see anything knowing the riverbank was too high on one side and that there was a deep waterhole nearby. I was terrified and couldn’t have moved to save myself (I can’t swim). They were the longest minutes in my life until I saw the lit lantern slowly coming back towards me.

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  4. mjspringett says:

    Love your site, keep mucking about in the marsh, it is always worthwhile, thanks MJ

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  5. mike585 says:

    Thanks, MJ. Of course, you are absolutely right. There is nothing like a marsh for maintaining a person’s interest in fauna and flora.

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  6. Badger Watching Man says:

    Great to hear about the otter! There’s a real reward for being out in the middle of the night. Even if everything else is staying out of sight at the moment, that’s a great encounter.

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  7. mike585 says:

    Thanks for your comment, BWM. Are you back in the blogosphere now, or is this a flying visit?

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    • Badger Watching Man says:

      Hi Mike
      Yeah, I’ve kind of disappeared lately. I’ve been busy, busy, busy I’m afraid. I’ve been working a lot, plus a long commute, which takes care of the weekdays, and Mrs BWM’s been working weekend shifts (apart from last week, when she was out on the lash with the girls) so I’ve been looking after the little’un at the weekends. And she’s at an age where she’s difficult to bring out at the moment.
      I’m looking forward to getting outside again, even if it’s just to sit in a wood in the dark for a few hours and recharge. In the meantime, at least I can read your stories to inspire me!
      All the best and keep up the good work
      BWM

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      • mike585 says:

        I understand. Sometimes other things are more important than enjoying one’s self. I sympathise too; I know what it is like to be cut off from the enjoyable things in life.

        I have heard it said that every man should have a shed to retreat to for solace. I guess the marsh is my metaphorical shed and a badger’s sett, yours.

        Well, I hope you can get back to the badgers soon. I miss your postings.

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  8. Badger Watching Man says:

    Thanks Mike
    Very true. I’m spending my days as a high-powered business consultant, but I really enjoy lurking in the woods after dark and climbing trees. I guess you need a balance between them…

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  9. mike585 says:

    Indeed, there has to be a balance. Too much of a good thing is bad for you. 🙂

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  10. Sarah says:

    HAPPY BIRTHDAY to your blog! Very impressive blog and your articles are interesting to read.

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